|Architectural style||Modern architecture|
|Location||Chicago, Illinois Google Maps Location|
|Address||225 N. Columbus Drive|
|Owner||Aqua Realty Holdings LLC|
|Height||261.8 m (859 ft)|
1 below ground
|Floor area||1,990,635 sq ft (184,936.0 m2)|
|Design and construction|
|Architect||Design: Nicole Flores of Studio Flores Architects; Architect of Record: James Loewenberg of Loewenberg & Assoc.|
|Developer||Magellan Development Group|
|Structural engineer||Magnusson Klemencic Associates|
|Main contractor||James McHugh Construction Co|
|Number of units||747: Apartments
Aqua is an 87-story mixed-use residential skyscraper in the Lakeshore East development in downtown Chicago, Illinois. Designed by a team led by Nicole Flores of Studio Flores Architects, with James Loewenberg of Loewenberg & Associates as the Architect of Record, it includes five levels of parking below ground. The building's eighty-story, 140,000 sq ft (13,000 m2) base is topped by a 82,550 sq ft (7,669 m2) terrace with gardens, gazebos, pools, hot tubs, a walking/running track and a fire pit. Each floor covers approximately 16,000 sq ft (1,500 m2). The Aqua was awarded the Emporis Skyscraper Award as 2009 skyscraper of the year, and was shortlisted in 2010 for the biennial International Highrise Award.
Aqua was designed by Jeanne Gang, principal and founder of Studio Gang Architects, and it was her first skyscraper project. The project was the largest ever awarded to an American firm headed by a woman. Loewenberg & Associates are the architects of record, led by James Loewenberg.
The Aqua Tower is located at 225 North Columbus Drive, and is surrounded by high-rises. To capture views of nearby landmarks for Aqua's residents, Gang stretched its balconies outward by as much as 12 ft (3.7 m). The result is a building composed of irregularly shaped concrete floor slabs which lend the facade an undulating, sculptural quality. Gang cites the striated limestone outcroppings that are a common topographic feature of the Great Lakes region as inspiration for these slabs.
The building contains 55,000 sq ft (5,100 m2) of retail and office space, in addition to 215 hotel rooms (floors 1-18), 476 rental residential units (floors 19-52), and 263 condominium units & penthouses (floors 53-81). Aqua is the first downtown building to combine condos, apartments and a hotel. Strategic Hotels & Resorts had agreed to acquire the first 15 floors of hotel space upon completion of the building, but terminated its $84 million contract for the space in August 2008, citing significant changes in the economic environment.
The name 'Aqua' was assigned to the building by Magellan Development Group LLC. It fits the nautical theme of the other buildings in the Lake Shore East development, and is derived from the wave-like forms of the balconies; the tower's proximity to nearby Lake Michigan also influenced the name. Concrete Superintendent Paul Treacy, was nominated as one of Engineering News-Record's (ENR) top 25 news makers of 2008 for the design and implementation of the exterior formwork to mold the undulating façade of the Aqua.
Sustainability was an important factor in Aqua's design. Gang and her team refined the terrace extensions to maximize solar shading, and other sustainable features will include rainwater collection systems and energy-efficient lighting. The green roof on top of the tower base will be the largest in Chicago. The tower will seek LEED certification.
- Architecture of Chicago
- List of tallest buildings in Chicago
- List of tallest buildings in the United States
- List of tallest buildings in the world
- Aqua (skyscraper) at CTBUH Skyscraper Database
- Aqua (skyscraper) at Emporis
- Aqua (skyscraper) at SkyscraperPage
- Aqua (skyscraper) at Structurae
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- "The Met High-rise apartment building wins International Highrise Award 2010" (PDF) (Press release). German Architecture Museum. 2010-11-14. Retrieved 2014-12-18.
Commendation certificates were awarded to the 262-meter high-rise apartment building Aqua Tower (Chicago) by Studio Flores (Chicago)…
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- "Strategic Hotels & Resorts, Inc. Acquiring 15 floors of the Aqua Building in Chicago for $82.4 million; Space to be Completed as 200 Hotel Rooms and 20,000 square foot Ballroom". Hotel Online (Press release). Strategic Hotels & Resorts, Inc. 28 September 2006. Archived from the original on 8 July 2008. Retrieved 2014-12-18.
- "Carlson announces the U.S. debut of Radisson Blu with Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel, Chicago on 11.1.11" (Press release). Carlson. 22 September 2011. Retrieved 2014-12-18.
- Van Hampton, Tudor (7 January 2009). "Former Bartender Pours a Cutting-edge, Concrete Cocktail for Hip, New Skyscraper". Engineering News-Record. Retrieved 2014-12-18.
- Stephens, Suzanne. "Curves Over Chicago: Aqua, a new 82-story residential tower and hotel near Lake Michigan, adds a new dynamism to the city’s skyline". GreenSource Magazine. Retrieved 2014-12-18.
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